New York City Council Quinn addresses State of the City

by Katie Fisher
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Council Speaker Quinn wants to focus on helping middle-class families

In her State of the City speech Monday, the likely mayoral candidate Christine Quinn said she wants to ensure residents never have to call any other place home.

She outlined a series of proposals to help boost the city's declining middle-class.  The speech, which was delivered at City Hall, focused on a new report that shows a decrease in the Big Apple's middle-class. 

The so-called, "Middle Class Squeeze" report found the unemployment rate for middle-income residents is at an all time high of 6.2%.  She proposed creating new jobs and better job training programs in order to build a stronger and more diverse workforce. 

"We need to make sure that people who want to stay in our great city, can afford to stay" said Quinn. "We have no greater challenge or obligation that we represent than to tackle this problem head on and deliver results."

Quinn also said too many residents face out of control costs of living.  Under her plan, she said the city plans to build 40,000 new affordable apartment units specifically for middle-income New Yorkers.  This plan is expected to be carried out over the next decade. 

"To preserve and strengthen the middle class, we need to create good jobs, and make sure that works have the training they need to enter the job market of the 21st century.  We must finally address the cost that makes New York such an expensive place to live."

Further plans include boosting the economy in outer boroughs, like areas in the South Bronx, by strengthening and developing new infrastructure.  In addition, a new bill was introduced to help over 90,000 families. The legislation would create a childcare tax credit that could save up to $2,000 for many parents.

"More often than not, both parents need to work to make ends meet.  That means the added cost of child care. An expense that for many families is actually more than housing," added Quinn.

She said parents pay an average of over $19,000 per year for child care costs, making these costs among the most expensive in the country. 

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